BBC Factual has recommissioned three documentary programmes – Saving Lives in Cardiff, Murder 24/7 and This Farming Life – totalling four new series and 36 hours of new programming.

Clare Sillery, Head of Commissioning, Documentaries, says: “Filmed in locations in Cardiff, the West Midlands and rural Scotland, these new commissions demonstrate our commitment to representing the lives of people across the UK and drawing on local talent in the production process to deliver series at volume. These returning series are incredibly important to the docs slate, enabling us to tackle valuable and timely issues, from the impact of crime to the challenges facing the NHS, in an immersive and accessible way for as broad an audience as possible.”


Filming is underway at the Cardiff and Vale University Hospitals for a new series of Saving Lives, from Label1 (a Fremantle label).

Following Saving Lives in Leeds based at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, the new series will follow the daily decisions made by clinicians, as they seek to transform the lives of their patients in South Wales, against a backdrop of mounting waiting lists.

Featuring observational filming and in-depth interviews. the programmes will reveal the full scale of clinicians’ caseloads, taking us to the heart of compelling and life affirming patient stories at the heart of the largest hospital in Wales. The series is due to air on BBC Two and BBC Wales next year.

Nick Andrews, Senior Head of Commissioning, BBC Wales says: “It is terrific to have the new series of Saving Lives filmed here in Wales. A privileged glimpse into a remarkable world that without says has touched all of our lives. As if the setting isn’t compelling enough, the life changing decisions staff are having to make every single day will move you, me and audiences in Wales and across the UK.”

Lorraine Chalker-Phillips, CEO and Co-Founder of Label1, says: “Gaining access to any organisation is always an honour and something we never take for granted. Label1 are delighted to be making the next series of Saving Lives with our team in Wales as we continue to bring heart-warming and important stories to our audiences to show what’s going on inside our hospitals and the decisions that staff have to make day in day out on who to treat next”.

Jackie Waldock, Executive Producer of Saving Lives, says: “We are delighted to bring viewers this eye-opening medical series. Filmed across the whole of Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, it gives a unique insight into the variety of work being done across their departments at a time when decisions around how to tackle the growing backlog have never been more important.”

Suzanne Rankin, CEO of Cardiff and Vale University Health Board says: “I am extremely proud of the work that we do to support patients not just in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan but across the whole of Wales. Colleagues do a difficult a job every day and the past few years have been more challenging than ever, however the series will give patients and their loved ones the opportunity to see some of the difficult decisions we make daily as well as the fantastic clinical work and expertise of the multi-disciplinary teams. Health is always advancing and viewers will see some of the best clinical innovations but also compassionate care that we give patients, who are often at their most vulnerable and lowest ebbs.”

Series two of Saving Lives… was commissioned by Clare Sillery, Head of Commissioning, Documentaries and Nick Andrews, Senior Head of Commissioning, BBC Wales. Commissioning Editor for BBC Factual is Anna Dickeson and Commissioning Editor for BBC Wales is Sian Harris. It is Executive Produced by Jackie Waldock and Gaynor Davies for Label1 Television.

Documentary series Murder 24/7 returns to BBC Two and iPlayer, this time filmed with West Mercia Police in the West Midlands. The series follows murder investigations from multiple perspectives in real time.

Murder 24/7 follows the twists and turns, dead ends and breakthroughs of complex murder investigations. Forensic work at the crime scene, interviews with witnesses, trawling CCTV, analysing mobile phones, executing search warrants, and hunting down suspects, no stone is left unturned in the race to catch the killer.

Colin Barr, Creative Director, Factual at Expectation said: “Witnessing the scale, intensity and complexity of a murder investigation minute by minute is not only extraordinarily gripping, it offers a window on to some of the biggest challenges facing Britain today. From mental health to poverty, violence against women to organised crime gangs, Murder 24/7 takes viewers deep inside the most pressing issues and the most serious violent crimes.”

Murder 24/7 6×60 was commissioned by Clare Sillery, Head of Documentaries for BBC Two and iPlayer. It is being made by Expectation Factual where the Executive Producers are Colin Barr and Rachael Barnes. The BBC Commissioning Editor is Carl Callam.


This Farming Life, the documentary series that follows the lives of farmers in rural Scotland through the four seasons of a year has been commissioned for two new series from BBC Studios.

Alan Holland, Head of BBC Studios, Specialist Factual Productions said: ‘ We are absolutely delighted that This Farming Life has been greenlit for two more series. Audiences really relate to the very human, universal stories that are depicted throughout, and there is no greater setting that the stunning Scottish landscape. This is important series for the documentary community in Scotland and will allow us to continue to deliver training opportunities from our base in Glasgow.’

Louise Thornton, Head of Commissioning for BBC Scotland added: “This Farming Life performs really well with our audiences in Scotland but also across the UK and we’re delighted to invest in it for another two series. By working with our colleagues at BBC Factual we are able to bring more content from Scotland to audiences across the UK to better reflect, represent and serve all parts of the country.”

This Farming Life is 12 x 60 a co-commission from BBC Scotland and BBC Factual for BBC Two and iPlayer and is produced by BBC Studios, Specialist Factual Productions.

Two series of This Farming Life have been commissioned by Clare Sillery, Head of Commissioning, Documentaries and Louise Thornton, Head of Commissioning, Scotland. The Commissioning Editors are Fran Baker for BBC Factual and Tony Nellany and Sidra Khan for BBC Scotland. The Executive Producer for BBC Studios is Jo Roe. Production will begin on series seven later this year, with series eight following in 2025.


Jon Creamer

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